The MSc/PgDip programme in Food Safety and Control addresses the key issues of food control, from both the food producers and food law enforcement points of view, recognising the equally important needs of distributors, retailers and of course, consumers.
The course covers the knowledge and skills required for the successful introduction and implementation of systems of control, such as those based on the accepted principles of Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP), and other international quality management standards.
The responsibility of assuring the safety of food lies primarily with government and the industry. In today's food industry, all aspects of the production, storage and distribution of food must be effectively controlled, not only to assure safety and wholesomeness, but also to ensure efficient and consistent manufacture at the lowest possible cost. Consumers are demanding a greater assurance of safety as well as more information on which to base their choices. Students are expected to take on demanding roles in a wide range of food control activities in both the private and public sectors upon graduation, while gaining an internationally recognized qualification.
EU study opportunity
EU study opportunities exist with the University of deLorraine Nancy, France, and Universidad Politécnica deValencia (UPV), Valencia, Spain.
Excellent scholarship opportunity
Students who have accepted an offer for a place on this course are encouraged to apply for LSBU's Frank Brake scholarship. Find out more about the Frank Brake scholarship: http://www.lsbu.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/fees-and-funding/scholarships/frank-brake-scholarship
See the website http://www.lsbu.ac.uk/courses/course-finder/food-safety-control-msc
All modules are assessed through a mix of formal examination and coursework. Each module represents 200 hours of learning time with up to 40 hours of class contact time.
- Food regulation and sustainability
Food legislation is an essential element for an effective food safety and control. The module deals with legislative control at various levels, embracing national and European Union legislation and also international approaches to harmonisation. It also provides an awareness of the different types of food standards, and their implications for manufacturers, retailers and consumers. It also addresses the policy issues in sustainable food production and management.
- Food composition and safety
This module comprises of selected topics that are directly relevant to food safety and control. It considers the complex chemical composition of foods, the chemical safety of foods, quality parameters, and develops the skills to interpret and use data. The common themes throughout the module are the choice of suitable, appropriate and cost effective analytical methodology, and the correct interpretation of analytical results.
- Food microbiology and hygiene
This module is designed to help you develop an understanding of food microbiology, to appreciate the principles of food microbiology and explore both microbial food spoilage and food borne microorganisms. You'll be able to critically analyse the means by which food can be processed safely from a microbiological standpoint, and the methodology that is applied to achieve this. Emphasis will be given to the development, application and use of microbiological criteria for foods and their limitations.
- Food quality management
This module introduces the principles behind all effective quality management systems (QMSs) employed in the modern food industry. Quality of product or service does not just happen; it has to be planned and managed. Systems used by small as well as large companies are covered.
- Food product development management
This module examines the management processes involved in the design and development of new safe food products. Students work together in small groups and adopt an allocated role within the group. The groups respond to a product development brief by designing and developing a new food product or an extension of an existing product. You'll prepare an individual portfolio describing your experience and contribution and make a group presentation of your product to a panel of external guests as a 'commercial pitch'.
- Food control operations
This module outlines the rationale, philosophy and concepts of modern food control, introducing the precautionary principle, the scope ranging from 'farm to fork', and the requirement of risk assessment. The principles of control based on prevention rather than detection and self-regulation are underlined throughout. Modern tools, techniques and procedures in food control are also introduced, illustrating the scope, applications and potential benefits of effective food control. You'll learn how to draw up specifications, identify safety hazards, conduct risk assessments, determine product shelf life, apply the commonly used statistical quality control techniques as well as use basic sensory evaluation methods. In the end, you'll have a broad and comprehensive grounding in modern food control operations.
- Research methods
This module aims to equip you with the knowledge and skills required for scientific research and systematic investigation. You'll learn how to ask the right questions, develop meaningful research proposals and evaluate objectively and independently research findings. Emphasis will be given to ethics, background information search, planning, experimental design, data collection and analysis. Principles of scientific methods, objective reasoning, idea formulation and model building will also be included. In data analysis, you'll be introduced to the most common statistical techniques covering both parametric and non-parametric tests.
The Project forms the climax of the MSc Food Safety and Control programme. It's the opportunity for you to demonstrate your grasp of food control in its widest sense, and produce documentary evidence of that grasp. The project provides the opportunity for you to apply your knowledge in an integrated fashion to a particular challenge in the management and control of food safety. We always try to help you match your project intention with your career aspirations and where possible use our networks to enable you to work on real commercial problems within an industrial placement.
The course has been developed to provide:
- A thorough understanding of the scientific principles on which both the safe handling of food and food control procedures are based
- An appreciation of the importance of the proper control of manufacture, storage and distribution, and the means by which it is achieved in the production and sale of safe food
- An understanding of the food industry's responsibilities to the interests and welfare of the consumer
- Opportunities to consider the social and economic contexts in which the industry operates
- An intellectually stimulating and coherent programme relevant to both your needs and those of the food industry
- A detailed understanding of the philosophy and methodology of research
- The best possible opportunity to develop personally and professionally
- The knowledge and skills necessary to enhance your career prospects.
The programme covers the knowledge and skills required for the successful introduction and implementation of systems of control such as those based on the accepted principles of Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP), and other international quality management standards. This opens up numerous and diverse opportunities in food safety and control.
You'll study all areas of food safety, ranging from microbiological, chemical and physical safety in the different modulesand throughout the programme.
The course will open up a wide range of career opportunities including roles in: product development; quality control; food safety and quality management; catering and retailing; technical auditing; and food law enforcement. Some of our graduates have gone on to PhD degrees.
Recent employers include Kerry Foods, Leathams, Bakkaver, Kraft Foods, Tesco, Asda, Marks and Spencer, Harrods and local authorities.
LSBU Employability Services
LSBU is committed to supporting you develop your employability and succeed in getting a job after you have graduated. Your qualification will certainly help, but in a competitive market you also need to work on your employability, and on your career search. Our Employability Service will support you in developing your skills, finding a job, interview techniques, work experience or an internship, and will help you assess what you need to do to get the job you want at the end of your course. LSBU offers a comprehensive Employability Service, with a range of initiatives to complement your studies, including:
- direct engagement from employers who come in to interview and talk to students
- Job Shop and on-campus recruitment agencies to help your job search
- mentoring and work shadowing schemes.
You'll be encouraged to undertake a work-based project or dissertation.
Teaching and learning
You'll make extensive use of the Virtual Learning Environment, so materials are available whenever you need them. Personal tutoring support, extraclinics offering support outside lecture and tutorial sessions are available.There's a major focus on the practical applications of knowledge, supported byhands-on laboratory exercises. Various assessment methods are used in modules across the course.